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Clippers' change is clear; now they hear 'Beat L.A.' [Video]

December 26, 2011 |  3:33 pm

For years the chant "Beat L.A." was reserved for the Lakers.

But during Sunday's 105-86 victory over Golden State, the Clippers players heard those disparaging words for the first time in their careers, and it was music to their ears.

"They said that? I was so focused on my free throws," joked Clippers center DeAndre Jordan, who was four for 12 from the charity stripe.

Jordan added: "I guess it's kind of good to hear that. We're getting more respect, which is good."

Much more.

Now that the Clippers acquired Chris Paul, Chauncey Billups and Caron Butler, people are saying that a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2006 could be as good or better than Lakers, the 16-time NBA champions. The Clippers have a different presence when they walk into gyms, they're no longer considered an easy win, they're no longer L.A.'s junior varsity NBA team.

Even Clippers Coach Vinny Del Negro acknowledged that hearing "Beat L.A." emanate from the Warriors' crowd felt good. "We're trying to be relevant," he said.

The Clippers sure improved their swagger, maybe next they should focus on boxing out.

They were outrebounded 10-1 at the start, but narrowed the gap to 48-43 for the game. Their free throw shooting needs some help too -- overall, they were a woeful 23 for 38.

Jordan knows the team has a lot of work to do. After all, he wants his team to be booed and taunted at every gym, not just the Warriors'.

Said Jordan: "The Clippers are "trying to hear the 'Beat L.A.' chant everywhere we go."

 --Melissa Rohlin